50 THINGS ABOUT US is a fast and furiously funny journey through our national memory. It is about money, history, songs, gongs, wigs, unicorns, guns, bungs, sods of soil and rich fuckers.
‘Patriotism is often the point where history and advertising intersect, and it was that brand of nationalism that Rees-Mogg and Johnson attempted to sell. It is a brand that can only hark backwards; a nostalgic nationalism built on half histories and wishes … The kind of patriotism where the poetry of John Betjeman sits alongside blaming migrants for TB.
But that is not our story. In fact, it is far from the narrative so many of us are a part of.’
From self-deceptions on size, stature and space (clue: there’s more than enough for everyone if we lose the golf courses) to the living links between empire, slavery, money and power, this is Mark Thomas’ quest to remind us of the true and shared greatness of modern Britain.
Structured as a list of fifty crucial ‘Things’, and fresh from a lock-down spent interviewing hundreds of NHS workers for the Wellcome Collection permanent archive, this is Mark Thomas at his provocative, passionate best.